Part 49

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 From: Wes>

To: Morgan>

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All by yourself...but you don't have to be.

July 25, 2015 at 12:22 PM

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Dear Morgan,

This is going to sound crazy, but just hang in there and you'll see where it is going. So the day before we wrote each other I was in a different state visiting a friend of mine. We went to a bar and it was there that I realized just how at risk we put women everyday. I needed to take a piss so I headed to the big sign at the back of the bar. As soon as I stepped into this narrow hallway, the lighting of the bar was left behind me and the small passage way was only lit with a tiny bulb hanging in the middle. I walked past the storage room, the employee room, and then some other door that I still have no idea what it lead to. Finally, at the very end of this long, dark hallway were the restrooms. First the men's, then the women's.

I stood outside that dark heavy door for a few minutes, looking around at the set up. Why would anyone think that the women's restroom should be at the very end of that hallway? Why wouldn't we make it the first door, or even better, a door the opens into the main bar? Why do we make women walk all the way down a hallway away from their friends and anyone who could see them if something was to go wrong and then on top of that, put them in a position where they could be physically trapped. The men's door should always be after the women's so that she has an open hallway to escape.

I know it sounds like I'm some sort of champion of women's rights or domestic violence prevention, but I assure you I've just had the veil of denial ripped from my eyes due to my sister's disappearance. I can no longer image a world where women are not set up to find trouble. It is a simple step we could take to make sure they are safer, and yet we don't take it. Anyway, in that moment in the hallway a woman walked out of the restroom and found me standing there. Here eyes widened and she froze for a second. I believe she was probably trying to decide if I could be trusted. I pushed into the men's bathroom with a sick feeling in my gut. I saw in her eyes that fear of the unknown and the way her eyes quickly left mine to determine how she could get around me. The whole experience left a bad taste in my mouth. I'll call it the "Dark Hallway Feeling."

Today I tried to find my sister again. I went in chat rooms and looked through message boards. I flipped through countless photos and followed trails to friends if friends of friends on social media. It gave me the Dark Hallway Feeling. The deeper I went down that dark hallway, the more scared I felt. It might be different because I wasn't afraid of my own safety, but I was afraid for Sam's. I stepped down, down, down, and away from the light and my friends, into the hallway that leads me to the scary place in my mind where bad things happen. I'm writing you right now in an attempt to get out of that fucking place and back into the light.

I can't help but imagine myself watching you walk down a dark hallway. Every time you go to your boyfriend, you will be leaving me to take that walk. I want you to know that I'll go with you. When you decide to leave I'll help in any way I can. Even if I'm just a friend waiting to make sure you come back to the light.

I wrote the email to Pines' sister. Thanks for that push. To answer my truth, I'm going to find a wife by trusting the universe to put her in my path. I hate dating apps like Tinder and Plenty of Fish. I like to really know a girl before I go out with her. Friends to relationship is my favorite. I've seen it work out well for my friends and now the bar has been set pretty high. Who knows? Maybe I'll meet a girl over the internet, we'll become friends, and then she'll fall in love with me because of my charm and my wit. ;)

Your truth: What would happen if I bought your airplane tickets to wherever you want to go?

I'll take a truth.

Your friend,

Wes

P.S. I'm leaving the light on on my end of thisemail. If you ever find you're in the darkness—run until you're back in thelight.

***VOTE**

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